The first half of the first game of the C-USA tournament looked like the first game of the year, as both Rice and Marshall combined for 25 turnovers, 34 missed shots, 13 of which were from long range, and just 42 combined points as Marshall took a slim 22-20 advantage into the locker room.
Sanford, FL native, senior guard Darryl Merthie led the Herd with six points on 2-5 shooting, while Rice junior guard Lawrence Ghoram paced his Owls with eight points on 3-9 shooting at the break.
Rice found their shooting stroke after halftime and they raced out to a double-digit lead. With Marshall still struggling to hit open shots from anywhere, the Owls are running away with the game.
Marshall had one last run in them as they cut the Rice lead to just four points with a little under four minutes remaining. Rice would then answer on a short jumper by senior forward Aleks Perka, followed by a three-point shot by Rodney Foster to put the game out of reach.
Rice was led in scoring by junior Lawrence Ghoram's 18 points, and after going scoreless in the first half, senior Rodney Foster finished with 12 points including key free throws down the stretch to seal the victory. Marshall was led in scoring by Darryl Merthie who scored 14 points in his final collegiate game.
Rice will advance to play Tulsa (22-9, 12-4 C-USA) tomorrow at noon.
One Game, One Upset
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